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Everything you could want to know about cupcakes

Why do we love cupcakes so much?

Ahhh, the wonderful cupcake. Who doesn’t love them? But did you know that cupcakes were initially called “number cakes?”. They were called number cakes because the ingredients were measured by weight, and each ingredient was given a number. Pretty cool fact, no? 

Our beautiful cupcakes have been a popular sweet treat since the 18th Century. Although it has yet to be discovered who made the first one. However, it is firmly believed that they originated in lovely England and were brought to the North Americas by the early settlers. 

Hmm, one more thing to note is that the original cupcake in America……..shhh! Don’t tell anyone…..there was no frosting or icing!  

Amelia Simmons’s recipe for cupcakes, using the title “a light cake to be baked in small cups,” was published in her book American Cookery in 1976. Here is the full recipe in case you are interested.


  • 1/2 pound butter
  • 1 pound of sugar
  • 12 eggs
  • 1 pound flour
  • 1/4 pound powder sugar
  • 1 wineglassful rosewater



  1. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.

  2. Beat the eggs and add them to the butter mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

  3. Sift the flour and powder sugar together and add them to the butter mixture, stirring until well combined.

  4. Stir in the rosewater.

  5. Grease small cups or molds and fill them with the batter.

  6. Bake in a moderate oven until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

  7. Serve with a dusting of powder sugar.


As you can see, the recipe was just a simple cake with butter, sugar, eggs, flour, and rosewater, no leavening agent, and no milk or vanilla extract. More importantly, again, no frosting or icing! They were just simply dusted with powdered sugar before serving.


So what makes these little cupcakes so popular?

Let’s think about it……..they are small, easy to grab, and very very tasty! So why wouldn’t we love them? Silly question, if you ask me! However, on a more practical note, let’s think about it more…..

Here are 10 reasons we have come up with.

  1. Cupcakes can be made in various flavors: Cupcakes come in multiple flavors, from classics like vanilla cupcakes and chocolate cupcakes to the crazier Bacon Cupcakes and Wasabi Cupcakes. Yep, bacon and wasabi…..and wait for it……….we have recipes for both Bacon Cupcakes and Wasabi Cupcakes.

  2. Cupcakes are great for portion control: Cupcakes are individually portioned, making it easy to control how much you eat. Although, the Mall of America staff in Bloomington, Minnesota, has not been listening and made a cupcake weighing a staggering 2.080 lbs (944 Kg)!

  3. Cupcakes are easy to decorate: Cupcakes can be decorated in various ways, from simple frosting and sprinkles to elaborate designs such as buttercream swirls, using edible flowers, and adding miniature figures.

  4. Cupcakes are customizable: Cupcakes can suit different dietary restrictions and preferences, such as gluten-free, ketogenic, low-carb, vegan, or low-fat. Yes, you have guessed it; we have recipes for these too. Cupcakes can be customized to suit any event, from a Baby Shower to the Super Bowl.

  5. Cupcakes are comforting and nostalgic: Cupcakes remind many people of their childhood and home-baked treats, evoking nostalgia and comfort.

  6. Cupcakes are perfect for any occasion: Cupcakes can be enjoyed anytime and anywhere, whether as breakfast, lunch, dinner, supper, or a snack.

  7. Cupcakes are great for sharing: Cupcakes are perfect for sharing with friends and family.

  8. Cupcakes are Portable: Cupcakes can be easily transported and enjoyed on the go.

  9. Cupcakes are affordable: Cupcakes are relatively inexpensive to make, making them accessible to everyone.

  10. Cupcakes can be fun to make: Baking cupcakes can be a fun and creative activity, whether you’re making them with friends, family, or kids.


What are some of the most common flavors of cupcakes?

Some of the most common flavors of cupcakes include:

  1. Vanilla: A classic and versatile flavor that can be paired with various frostings and toppings.

  2. Chocolate: A rich and decadent flavor that can be made in different variations, such as chocolate fudge or chocolate chip.

  3. Red velvet: A Southern classic made with cocoa powder and buttermilk and traditionally topped with cream cheese frosting.

  4. Lemon: A light and refreshing flavor made with lemon zest and juice and often paired with a lemon buttercream frosting.

  5. Strawberry: A popular flavor made with fresh or frozen strawberries and often paired with a strawberry buttercream or whipped cream frosting.

  6. Carrot: A moist and flavorful cupcake made with grated carrots, nuts, and spices and often paired with cream cheese frosting.

  7. Coffee: A rich and robust flavor made with coffee or espresso and often paired with a coffee or mocha frosting.

  8. Peanut Butter: A rich, creamy flavor made with peanut butter and often paired with chocolate or peanut butter frosting.

  9. Salted Caramel: A unique and delicious flavor made with caramel sauce and a touch of salt paired with caramel frosting.

  10. Pumpkin: A popular Fall flavor made with pumpkin puree and spices paired with cream cheese or maple frosting.


What are some unique and unusual flavors of cupcakes?

While traditional flavors like vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry are always popular, some bakers and pastry chefs have come up with unique and unusual cupcake flavors. Here are a few examples:

  1. Bacon: A savory cupcake that incorporates cooked bacon into the batter and is often paired with a maple or brown sugar frosting.

  2. Beer: A unique and flavorful cupcake made with beer and paired with a frosting made with the same beer or a complementary flavor.

  3. Wasabi: A spicy cupcake that incorporates wasabi into the batter and is often paired with a soy sauce or cream cheese frosting.

  4. Black licorice: A unique and bold cupcake made with black licorice extract and paired with a licorice or vanilla frosting.

  5. Sriracha: A spicy cupcake that incorporates Sriracha sauce into the batter and paired with a cream cheese or sour cream frosting.

  6. Balsamic Vinegar: A savory cupcake that incorporates balsamic vinegar into the batter and is often paired with a sweet and tangy frosting.

  7. Potato Chip: A savory cupcake that incorporates crushed potato chips into the batter and is often paired with a cheese or sour cream frosting.

  8. Curry: A savory cupcake that incorporates curry powder paired with a yogurt or sour cream frosting.

  9. Cheese: A savory cupcake that incorporates cheese into the batter and is often paired with a cheese or herb frosting

  10. Taro: A unique and flavorful cupcake with taro root paired with a coconut or taro frosting.


How can I make cupcakes Healthier?

There are several ways to make cupcakes healthier:

  1. Instead of using whole wheat flour, use all-purpose flour instead. This will add fiber and nutrients.

  2. Substitute natural sweeteners like honey, maple syrup, or dates instead of white sugar. Obviously, you can also reduce the amount of sugar used in any recipe.

  3. Use unsweetened applesauce or mashed bananas to replace some of the oil or butter in the recipe. This will decrease the amount of fat and add some natural sweetness.

  4. Add fruits or vegetables to the batter, such as grated carrots, zucchini, or berries.

  5. Use non-dairy milk instead of cow’s milk; this will make them suitable for those who are lactose intolerant or vegan.

  6. Use low-fat yogurt or sour cream instead of heavy cream for the frosting.

  7. Decorate with fresh fruits or nuts instead of sugary sprinkles or candy.

  8. Use baking powder and soda in the right amount to ensure the cupcakes are not heavy. This will make them lighter and fluffier.